Saturday, 29 December 2012

Roger Ebert puts End of Watch in his 2012 top ten and a video interview with Jake Gyllenhaal


I hope you're all enjoying the holidays and - if you're in Blighty - that you haven't been swept away to sea in the floods and - if you're in NE USA - that you haven't frozen to your snow shovel. As one (ie, me) continues to work one's way through an inexhaustible mountain of cheese, I thought I'd aid your digestion with a quick post. This is merited because a) I've been missing you and b) Roger Ebert voted End of Watch his fourth favourite movie of 2012!

'Here is one of the best police movies in recent years, a virtuoso joining of performances and often-startling action. It stars Jake Gyllenhaal and Michael Peña as Taylor and Zavala, two Los Angeles street cops who bend a few rules but must be acknowledged as heroes. After too many police movies about officers who essentially use their badges as licenses to run wild, it's inspiring to realize these men take their mission -- to serve and protect -- with such seriousness they're willing to risk their lives.'

Meanwhile, a video interview from Extra  in which Jake Gyllenhaal talks about being tasered (not for the first time and possibly not for the last) and New Eyes for the Needy.

Thanks to IHJ for the fab new pic from the set of Time to Dance.

My review of Life of Pi on MovieBrit.

Sunday, 23 December 2012

Happy holidays! A Prisoners update and a WDW Italian Interlude

Now that we've survived the Apocalypse, I feel that I can safely wish you Happy Holidays without fear of spreading some dreaded Mayan pestilence. And so, whatever you celebrate, however you celebrate it, and even if you celebrate nothing at all, have a wonderful few days doing what you like to do the most before having to do a lot more of what you like to do a lot less.

Jake Gyllenhaal is about ready - one hopes - to shave off the shaggy Face Pet once and for all, putting it to one side with the end of the hugely successful If There Is.... run. Who knows, Jake may have shaved it off already. He may even have shaved it off into some elaborate pattern. We must wait and see what the next photos reveal. Maybe it'll be even longer. This might be time to open a betting  book. Of course, he may wait until after Christmas because with the beard he is a ready made Father Christmas for the Gyllenhaal-Sarsgaard Clan. All the beard needs is a bit of flour or icing sugar.

With the play out of the way, and while we wait for the release of An Enemy, it's time to look ahead to the filming of Prisoners. The release date of 20 September has now been confirmed along with more details of the story, also confirming that Jake will play Detective Loki:

'In the rural New England town of Brockton, Massachusetts, neighbors and friends the Dovers and the Birches gather for Thanksgiving dinner, but by the end of the night, their celebration turns to panic when the families' two youngest daughters go missing. As the hours pass and the girls don't turn up, it becomes terrifyingly apparent they've been kidnapped. After the cops fail to find them, Keller Dover (Hugh Jackman) decides to take the law into his own hands, running up against dedicated Detective Loki (Jake Gyllenhaal). But even as Loki is diligently working against the clock to solve the case, Keller will stop at nothing to get their prime suspect to talk before it's too late.'

Thanks very much to IHJ for the scan from Spires Oxford and to BBMISwear for the scan from Entertainment Weekly's review of the year!

WDW Tuscan Interlude

Last week I got back from a fantastic break in Tuscany, a place that perfectly combines beautiful countryside, ancient towns (often on hills), art and architecture, tasty food and luxuriant wines. Florence and Pisa might be ridiculously off season at this time of year but in December the towns of Tuscany are quiet, Christmassy and spectacularly atmospheric, with the most incredible light. Not being one to spare you an Interlude or two, I thought I'd inflict some photos* on you. (* The photos are best viewed while imbibing a hearty chianti.)





** Have a wonderful time over the holidays - see you on the other side! **

Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Happy birthday, Jake! And a look back to 12-12-12

Doesn't time fly?! It seems barely one month let alone 24 since Jake Gyllenhaal was talking about diving with walruses to celebrate his 30th birthday. But, as sure as night follows day and holidays in Italy are followed by excessive credit card bills and an expanded waistline, every year along comes another birthday - the 32nd. So, altogether now, with one voice: HAPPY BIRTHDAY, JAKE! If the world's due to end on Friday, you might as well get a birthday in before it.

As someone born 6 days the other side of Christmas, please can I make a plea that you don't wrap Jake's presents in Christmas wrapping paper.

While I was away, Jake appeared on the 12-12-12 Concert for Sandy Relief, which took place in Madison Square Gardens and was watched by over 19 million Americans. As well as raising a huge amount of money, it also gave most of Britain's rockers a break from fog. Unfortunately, it's believed that some of them may have come back again. You can watch Jake's contribution above, with huge thanks to IHJ! If you were one of the lucky ones who placed a call and got Jake at the other end of the line, you may relive that moment below:

Happy birthday, Jake!

Thanks to IHJ for the pics.

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Jake Gyllenhaal nominated for a Critics' Choice Movie Award

Jake Gyllenhaal is back in NYC, hard at work on If There Is.... to earn enough to buy all his fans a big pressie for Christmas, and so this is perfect timing to bid adieu for the week. I'm off to Italy - Tuscany, to be more specific - tomorrow and will return in a few days, hopefully to find Jake nominated for countless numbers of shiny gongs. It's begun with the Critics' Choice Movie Awards, for which Jake is nominated for Actor in an Action Movie award.

Thanks to IHJ for the lovely pic of Jake taking a walk in NYC on 7 December. See you in a few days!

Friday, 7 December 2012

Jake Gyllenhaal catch up - interviews, videos and charity dos. And how to audition for Prisoners!

It's Friday! That can mean only one thing - it's time to put your feet up, pour a glass of something red while nibbling chocolate fancies and catching up on another busy week in Jakedom. Jake Gyllenhaal resumes his stage career tomorrow, 8 December, as If There Is.... kicks off again for the last couple of weeks before Christmas. But there has been little time for Jake to put his feet up. Below is a fascinating interview Jake recorded in London at the end of last week.

Before returning to the US from London, Jake did another of his famous Jetlag Interviews - this time with GQ. Apart from talking about End of Watc, Jake took the opportunity to give us some advice: 'In work, never have any regrets and always leave everything on the field. And in life…at times, my grandfather would say to me, "This too shall pass". That's excellent advice.' Very George Harrison, if you don't mind me saying so.

Back in the US, Jake has been getting on using his stardom in a way that is clearly important to him - supporting charity. On Wednesday, Jake took part in ICAP's charity day which this year raised £11 million for those who need it. You can find more details here as well as photos here.

The lineup has just been announced for a Hurricane Sandy charity gala event called 12.12.12 which, coincidentally, will take place on 12.12.12. The concert will be broadcast around the world and so hopefully we will get to see a little of what Jake gets up to - obviously, if it doesn't involve performing with the Rolling Stones I'll be disappointed. Lots of details here. I must say how good it is to see all these events getting done before the end of the world on 21 December.

Talking of charity, photos have come to light of the Arts in the Armed Forces event that Jake took part in last month. Thanks to BBMISwear for the link! BBMISwear may be spottable on one of the photos at the site so take a look!

And finally...

If you've got some time on your hands this Sunday and you happen to live near Conyers in Georgia, then why not pop down to the Rockdale Career Academy to audition for a role in Prisoners? The instructions for those interested in appearing in a film called Prisoners that isn't about Prisons: 'Extras are needed to portray middle class men and women with suburban and rural community looks; police precinct men and women, such as detectives police officers and precinct staff; and hospital and emergency room staff types, such as nurses, doctors, orderlies, etc. Extras are encouraged to come dressed as the type of character they want to portray. They should also bring photos, a photo ID and be legal to work in the U.S. Those with acting resumes should bring them as several featured extras are expected to be used in the film.'

My distance from Georgia rules me out, which is a shame because I'm sure I could brush up my rural community look.

Thanks to IHJ and links for the pics!

Monday, 3 December 2012

Jake Gyllenhaal in London, Part 2, and a couple of extraordinary interviews

Jake Gyllenhaal has now left these shores -  leaving behind a country seduced by one of the most impressive beards to appear on the nation's chat shows in recent times. At the moment, one can just speculate whether Jake will be returning to Europe shortly for other End of Watch release dates but even though it was brief, the visit was a great success.

In addition to the Graham Norton Show and the Radio 1 Breakfast Show (see below), Jake also appeared on Channel 4's T4 show on Saturday morning talking to Jameela. Let us hope that video of this appears. An interview with Jake was also broadcast on the XFM Breakfast Show with Danny Wallace. Hopefully, you can listen to that here.

A brief recap of some of the other most significant appearances (ie, the ones we have a record of).

From overseas comes the news that End of Watch will be re-released in the US this month - surely a sign that the Oscar buzz is increasing in volume.

Meanwhile, this week Hitfix has published a wonderful interview with Jake in which he looks back over a career working with some extraordinary directors. This is just the sort of stuff I want to hear and Jake does not disappoint. Do read it, it's full an revealing. I was intrigued to hear Jake say this, for instance, about Sam Mendes 'he was the best acting director and coach that I've ever worked with. The things I learned about acting from him I've taken with me everywhere I've gone.'

There is much more about Ang Lee, David Fincher, David O'Russell, Jim Sheridan and Ed Zwick, as well as David Ayer. I wonder how many other directors Jake will work with during his long career that will also be called David...

In Hitfix's other full interview with Jake, David Ayer also reveals a little about why Jake was so keen to take on the End of Watch role - and that he was actually sick of his life. Clearly, here was another of those roles, as with Jarhead, that he fought for and he needed: 'Gyllenhaal was looking for something new in his life and, according to Ayer, chased the project down. "I think he was just frustrated," Ayer said by telephone. "He wanted to act. He wanted to just sink his teeth into a role and act and not be distracted by the sort of big business side of things. He wanted to lose himself and he wanted to be reinvented…He's just like, 'Look, I'm sick of everything. I'm sick of my life and I want to change it. I want change.' And that's all I heard, is that he's ready to transform. His heart was really open at that time and he was really receptive to doing something totally different and giving me the total commitment that I needed for this movie to work…I told him, 'Look, if this works out, you're going to come out of this a different person.' And I think that happened."'

The photo is from Jake's BAFTA End of Watch Screening on Friday evening (thanks to IHJ).